09/01/2012 2:39PM

Finger Lakes: Six-figure sprints for juveniles highlight holiday card


A colt who was well-bet in his career debut at Saratoga and a pair of unraced fillies are among the intriguing possibilities in two hard-to-decipher rich stakes for 2-year-old New York-breds going six furlongs on the Labor Day holiday card at Finger Lakes.

Saint Arthur, third in his only start less than two weeks ago, is one of seven maidens in an 11-horse lineup of colts and geldings for the $156,825 Aspirant. First-time starters Sing to Me and Kelli Got Frosty merit respect despite their lack of racing experience among 10 fillies – all but one still a maiden – in the $154,888 Lady Finger.

In the Aspirant (race 7), Saint Arthur could be ready to pop after earning a 68 Beyer Speed Figure for his third-place finish as the 2-1 second choice in a field of six maiden special weight runners on Aug. 22 at Saratoga. His trainer, Carlos Garcia, shows a 6-for-17 record (35 percent) with 2-year-olds making their second lifetime start the past two years.

In addition, Saint Arthur brought $170,000 – more than eight times the stud fee of his sire, Invasor – at the Eastern Atlantic Sale at Timonium this past May.

A year ago, Martin shipped in second-time starter Shot Gun Pennie, who was fifth in her career debut at Saratoga with a modest 37 Beyer, to win the Lady Finger for 2-year-old fillies.

Two of the most logical win candidates in the Aspirant are Mr Flashy and Stoneless, both coming off daylight victories over maidens. Mr Flashy got a 67 Beyer Figure for his 9 3/4-length romp in the mud at Mountaineer. The group he defeated may not have been much, however, as runner-up Levkos Pirgos returned to win with a lowly 39 Beyer.

Stoneless scored by 4 3/4 lengths, earning a 52 Beyer, as the 8-5 favorite in a $50,000 maiden claimer at Saratoga in his career debut. His trainer, Bruce Levine, is 11 for 24 (46 percent) with the the New York-breds he has shipped to Finger Lakes the last five years. That includes two previous winners of the Aspirant – Bug Juice in 2010 and R B’s Glitter in 2003.

There are reasons to believe Sing to Me and Kelli Got Frosty will be ready to fire first time out in the Lady Finger (race 8).

Sing to Me is the first foal out of the mare Fly to Me, who was second against colts in the 2005 New York Breeders’ Futurity. She shows a series of sharp works for trainer M. Anthony Ferraro, including a bullet five-furlong breeze on Aug. 16.

Kelli Got Frosty came east from Keeneland to work a bullet 48.40-second half-mile over Saratoga’s training track on Thursday. Her trainer, Rudy Rodriguez, is 5 for 13 (38 percent) with 2-year-old statebred first-time starters, including winners at 9-1, 10-1, and 12-1.

The only winner in the field, E. Schifty, comes out of a maiden victory locally on Aug. 13 that produced a lowly 40 Beyer.

The track’s morning-line favorite at 6-5 is Shea Darby, who flashed high early speed and settled for second in her career debut at Saratoga on Aug. 8. Trainer Tom Albertraini shows a 7-for-28 record with second-time 2-year-old starters.